Wednesday, September 19, 2012

High School Pick: Wanderlove

by Kirsten Hubbard
Delacourt Press
335 pages

Bria Sandoval’s world is falling apart. She just finished graduating high school and had big plans for a trip to Europe with her BFF’s, but when the other girls have other plans, Bria is left in the wind. On top of that, her long-term relationship with Toby is over. Bria doesn’t know what she wants to do; her passion for her artwork is drying up, too. She makes a snap decision and buys a ticket for a guided tour of Central America.

Bria imagines it in her head—pristine, sandy beaches, warm ocean breezes, a beautiful flower in her hair, a long, flowing skirt and sandals--but what she pictures is far from grim reality. She arrives in Central America and joins a group of older-–way older—folks. The elderly folks love a guided tour with quiet hotels and clean sheets, but Bria longs for youthful adventure.

When she meets bad boy backpacker Rowan and his humanitarian minded sister Starling, Bria sees a world she wants to enter. The two siblings have traveled extensively and lived on a few dollars a day, crashing at dirty hostels and eating local fare. Their hippie-like existence calls to Bria, and she abandons her boring tour and joins them.

Bria visits Mayan villages, jungle vistas and beaches of Belize. She joins in on Rowan’s wonderlove. He’s running from his past and she’s running to a new life. Their adventure awakens feelings in each of them, and Bria will never be the same.

Recommended grades 9-up. Mature situations.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. I did not receive monetary compensation for this review.

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